Colorado county wants greater say in BLM sage grouse plan
Written byJOHN STROUD, Glenwood Springs Post Independent
Garfield County wants a more formal seat at the table as the U.S. Bureau of Land Management prepares a new plan to protect the greater sage grouse on federal land in Garfield County and elsewhere in northwest Colorado.
County commissioners unanimously approved a resolution asserting the county's right under federal law to coordinate with the BLM in writing the plan to help protect the bird's habitat. Other counties in the region are considering similar resolutions.
Roughly 1.8 million acres of Colorado's greater sage grouse habitat are on the sagebrush-covered BLM lands in northwest Colorado. That's about half of the entire sage grouse habitat in the state, according to BLM officials.
Primary threats have been identified as oil and gas development, roads and other development infrastructure that causes the habitat to be fragmented. Fire and invasive weeds are also considered to be threats.